Dining Down South at AKROTIRI Modern Eurasian Cuisine

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Alabang is so far from my place that I'd feel overly burdened to go there if it's not worth it. Work for most of the time made me travel there - and before I do go home, I'd plan ahead and make sure I discover something different, something that would impress my friends, my workmates, my family and my own taste buds. That's not hard to do mind you, but I guess there's an underlying notion of it being "worth it" before I do actually enjoy it this time because I traveled far for it. This is one of them, it's called AKROTIRI which serves modern Eurasian cuisine.

Set at the sprawling Filinvest business district at Commercenter in Alabang, this place is known for a small mall (by Philippine standards) and the neighboring food establishments. I have frequented this place in the past as I was staying in nearby hotels, so do expect people from neighboring towns, tourists and expats as well. 

Akrotori is a cozy little place that could sit 50-60 people. It's got fancy - proper seating, a huge bar and a small function room upstairs for private parties. It's perfect for small events and you can even fit a stage inside since it's got pretty high ceilings. They didn't shortchange in design because the whole place wreaks of a modern bistro - added with a look of an English pub you would often see in that region. Ahh I can still remember the few drinks I had there, I was in tipsy heaven!

The Food

The food is exquisite, albeit being a little pricey, you would see their servings are actually large. They use the freshest ingredients - and quality wise, it's worth it! I would never hesitate to take a few family members here to enjoy the food. It's fusion so I think it's easy to adapt with flavors that are used in the west, a hodgepodge of taste and cooking techniques that are familiar in Europe - all here in Manila.   

The Grilled Squid stuffed with Feta Foam and Black Ink Risotto was a good starter. It's slightly fishy because of obvious reasons, soft and the risotto was comforting. Make sure you have this while it's hot.

I have never had Octopus Adobo with Greek Eggplant Salad Aioli but being introduced to soft slices of tentacles, matched with pungent garlicky aioli and soft eggplant was but a surprising take. I guess the base of these dishes are mostly Mediterranean, so if you're fond of that this place would be awesome for you to do private dinners.   

I didn't get to taste everything but my seatmates loved the Hokkaido Smoked Salmon Sandwich with Spinach, Yogurt, Honey and Dill. It was soft, fresh tasting, and I bet all the salmon lovers out there would love this the most. It's like a slice of Scandinavia in a bun.

Dessert was a no brainer because this Chocolate Garden Mosaiko like milk chocolatle, it looked like garden soil but people had spoonfulls, your kids would love this too.

I admit I'm not much of a matcha lover, but for those who do it would be nice to get the Green Tea Tiramisu. It's foamy and not too sweet, but you have the small bits of chocolate to do the sweetness part otherwise.

Something crazy came in a plate because there's the Wagyu Corned Beef with Turmeric Mashed Potatoes, fried Kale and Aioli Wasabi. It's soft and meaty, ah I can almost taste it. I had a few servings of these because it was just there on the plate, and I just happened to enjoy it. That's a silly excuse but what the heck!

I liked the Beef Shank Dumpling in Red Turmeric Sauce too as they did it with bold flavors. Think of it as your usual meaty dumpling enveloped in warm moderately spicy sauce, totally good on a rainy day!

For a more Asian flair, the Chicken Satay Skewers with rice, curry sauce and grilled vegetables reminds me of nights in Kuala Lumpur. It's soft, pretty tasty. I dig it without the rice, but for you normal people, please do.

For sushi lovers, might I suggest the Tuna Tataki with Indian Crust, Lemon Soya Dressing, Wasabi Aioli and baby vegetables. Seared outside perfectly but you still have that great tuna meat inside which you'll be surprised with when you take a bite. The Indian crust is very strong, so expect something unusual and good.

This is the Fillet Mignon. Alone it would be something mild and subtle but with a reduced wine sauce, perfect crust outside, you'll enjoy this soft cut of meat anytime of the day. I think this is only available when available, not entirely on the menu yet. Perhaps if you go there on a good day they'd have this and recommend it.

Thick and tasty Grilled Salmon Fillet with Tzatziki-Wasabi Dressing and Fried Rice. I like the crust and meaty amount of salmon on the plate. This takes skill to perfect, and this wasn't bad. I'd opt for any protein but this is the healthy option.

The dish enjoyed most by people was the Grilled Prawns in Tamarind Dressing and Greens. I saw this on display for a few minutes, then it's gone! They tried to put more on the table, but it goes out so fast I didn't get a second photo for variety. It's that good. So make sure you order these if you're in Arkotiri.

For a Filipino twist, get the Sisig Tacos with Pork Belly, peppers, red cabbage and lettuce for your starters. This would be awesome with drinks too so if you're alone in the bar, get this to accompany you. Not even joking.

This is the Eurasian Soup with Souvlaki Skewers. It's like a light but sour vegetable stew accompanied with two skewers to break off the monotony of the dish. Again this is nice to have hot, don't wait til it gets cold on the table. It's like a twist on our own sinigang.

For the health freaks, try the Quinoa with Cucumber, Corn, Carrot, Ginger, Cabbage, Chives with Lemon Dressing. It's fresh tasting, not extremely heavy on the belly, but really filling. Try it with the other viands and start your meal with it.

For a light lunch or dinner, you may opt for the Organic Salad with Mixed Greens, vegetables, Sunflower seeds, citrus dressing. You don't have to have meat to enjoy your meal, give in.

For a more Greek experience, try the Watermelon Salad, feta cheese, lettuce, walnuts with balsamic dressing. Ask for more walnuts because you're going to finish this plate in no time.

This monstrosity is called the 24 hour Pork Belly with Apple Ginger wood sorrel leaves and kimchi on the side. Believe it or not, prep work alone did take a whole day so when you bite into the pork, it's so soft. So close your eyes and have it with the roasted pineapple, you'll get that sweet, tangy, lightly crispy pork goodness in every bite. I'd have this in a heartbeat, so don't go out of the place without trying this. Ask to make it extra crispy though, that totally would take it to another level!

This is Mussels sauteed with white wine, ginger and garlic. Best when hot, as airconditioning may be a tad too cold in the place make sure you have it in bowls and shared as soon as it lands on the table.

This is their Shellfish Saute, it's got crabs, huge shrimps, mussels, clams, doused with white wine. Pretty good dish to impress those seafood loving friends.

Thai Prawn Tom Yum and Curry Soup. This one is uniquely weird but you would just find yourself finishing the broth, the whole bowl in all it's tangy glory. This would be perfect to pair with white rice, plus imagine having this in a cold stormy night... ugh!

This is their Wagyu Burger with Cheese, Shitake Mushrooms, Caramelized Onions and rustic fries on the side. If I had room for more, I would definitely consider having this, but I settled with the slider version of it. Make sure you have this while it's hot, the beef patty is thick, you wouldn't want that to harden if it gets cold.

This is the Wagyu Skirt Steak with Spicy Chili Jam, Roasted Vegetables and Paprika Aioli. The chili was a treat, it kinda breaks the monotony of the savory steak. It's sweet, make a perfect bite with the roasted vegetables, potatoes and it's a done deal. This would be ideal for groups of 3 or 4.

This spice rack is displayed on the second floor, where the function room is. I suggest you reserve this for groups 12-15, which I think could fit that table.

This is the stairs to the second floor, their kitchen is just on the right side so expect action from the servers and chefs who often go up and down this side of the restaurant.

Thank you General Manager David Jones for taking good care of me while I was at the bar. The place was jam packed in the evening, so make sure you get a cozy place to drink and socialize. I think in special occasions, they have entertainment/ acoustic musicians to make your night a little better.

Order the drink Pimm's if you want something a little stronger than the usual. Or in any case, ask the bartender so he could whip up something good for you. He's quite good at it!



So for those who want good food, good cocktails paired with good friends and company, try to go to AKROTORI Modern Eurasian Cuisine at Commercenter in Alabang. Things may be moderately pricey but the servings are big. You can share most of the dishes, service is fast, this may well be a gem in the rough, but worthy to go too all the way down south. I surely had a few drinks, enjoyed it with a couple of other blogger friends that evening. Take time out of your busy schedule if you're in a business trip in this side of Manila, because you deserve it all.

Again, AKROTIRI Modern Eurasian Cuisine is located at the Commerce Center, Commerce Avenue corner Filinvest Avenue in Alabang, Muntinlupa, Metro Manila (view map above). You may also visit their website at akrotiri.ph or call them to reserve via (02) 851 54 49. They are open mall times 11AM–11PM, but they have an exit of their own so you could probably enjoy a little more in the wee hours.

Trust me on the booze! It's darn good!


No comments: